Out Of Gas

Episode Report Card
Shack: B+ | 4 USERS: F
Misty yellow-tinted memories

The ship attaches its docking platform to Serenity. The other captain holds a doodad up against the window of the door to the cargo bay so that Mal can see it. Mal opens the door and breathes in relief as a burst of fresher air flows into the cargo bay from the other ship. But the relief doesn't last long, as the captain and his crew pull guns on Mal. Stupid Murphy's Laws. Damn you, Murphy! Dammmmmnnnn yoooou!

Commercials. We return to the captain and his gang of anti-anti-heroes. The captain keeps his gun trained on Mal while his crew searches the ship for any other people. The captain tells them to kill anybody they find. Mal says they thought he was going to be reasonable about this.

Suddenly we're back in another yellow-tinted flashback. Mal and Zoe are…somewhere…getting robbed by bandits. A short guy named Marco appears to be in charge. His right-hand man (even though he's on Marco's left) is Jayne. You mean to say that our Jayne wasn't a noble officer of the law and protector of helpless children and old ladies before joining Serenity? Shocked! I am shocked! Mal asked Zoe which one she thinks tracked them. Zoe: "The ugly one, sir." Mal: "Could you be more specific?" She didn't just call our Jayne "ugly," did she? Marco refers back to the flashback trigger statement and asks if they "look reasonable." Mal admits that looks can be deceiving. Jayne responds, "But not as deceiving as a lowdown…dirty…deceiver." Everybody gives this rather direct simile due consideration. Mal responds, "Well put," and asks Zoe for her opinion. Zoe observes that it "had a kind of poetry to it."

But enough of Slam Night with the Bandits -- it's time to get down to business. Jayne asks Marco if he should shoot them now. Marco tells him to wait until they tell them where they put "the stuff." Apparently, the cargo is several cases of Hostess snack cakes. They must have a delivery on Planet Rosie. Jayne orders, "Tell us where the stuff's at, so I can shoot you." Surprisingly, this brilliant stratagem doesn't seem to fly with Mal and Zoe. Mal tells them that he's hidden "the stuff," and if Jayne shoots them, they won't be able to find it. Jayne points out that he found them easily enough. I guess Zoe did call Jayne ugly. Oh, Zoe. I suppose there's no accounting for taste. Wash isn't exactly the elephant man, though. Anyway, Mal's internal wheels start spinning as he realizes that Jayne, while so very stupid in some ways, is pretty clever in others. Mal asks Jayne how much he's getting paid. Jayne's cut of the loot is seven percent. Mal responds with mock disbelief. Jayne's all, "What?" Mal's all, "Nuthin'." Then Mal asks Zoe if that doesn't seem a little low. Zoe says it does. Jayne insists that seven percent is standard. Mal casually comments to Zoe that he's paying her too much. Jayne wants to know what Zoe's getting paid. Marco is slightly quicker on the uptake, and tells Mal to "knock it off." Mal assures Jayne that he's sure Marco treats him just fine, with his own room and everything. No? Jayne has to share a bunk with some other bandit? Oh, poor Jayne. Marco spits out, "Jayne, this ain't funny." Jayne responds, "Yeah, I ain't laughing." Mal offers Jayne a deal; if he switches over to his side, Mal will not only show him where "the stuff" is, he'll make sure Jayne gets a bigger piece of the (Hostess fruit) pie, and his own room with access to the kitchen. Marco keeps interrupting and trying to get Jayne to stop negotiating with Mal. Finally, Jayne points his gun downward and shoots Marco in the knee and tells him, "Shaddup." Then he asks Mal, "How big a room?" And that's how we got our very own loveable man-ape gone wrong.

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